V Scholar Plus Award- extended funding for exceptional V Scholars
Cancer is an abnormal state wherein cells become uncontrolled in their ability to divide, grow and cross tissue borders. These cellular processes are governed by an array of signaling proteins including KRAS. Mutations in the KRAS protein result in uncontrolled signaling leading to cancer. KRAS mutations are some of the most common causes of many types of cancer. However, researchers have struggled to discover ways of treating tumors driven by mutant KRAS. The goal of this project is to develop new drugs that directly target mutant KRAS proteins. We will focus on two mutations. One is common in lung cancer, KRAS G12C. The other is common in gastrointestinal cancers, KRAS G13D.